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Jim2
01-06-2015, 12:58 AM
Hey guys, can I ask some advice again?

My friend's truck has something wrong with it, and he asked me to help figure it out..

He said he was driving down the road, and it just died out. This road is about 30 mph, with stoplights, so it might've been stop and go traffic. He said it took a minute or two to get it fired up again, and he then managed to get it off the road, but then it died out again. So he got it towed home..

It didn't overheat, but he said he "almost" overheated it about a week ago.

I met him at his place and he fired it up for me. It started fine, real quick, and it ran smooth. But then it died out after about 20 seconds. We never touched the gas pedal.

Tomorrow morning I'm gonna go over there with my fuel pressure gage and vacuum gage... but I don't really know what to look for.

I figure we'll check the fuel pressure regulator, and the fuel pressure itself, but is there anything else I could look for? I'd appreciate any advice.

It's a '98 Ford Explorer.. 2WD, V-6, fuel injected..
And the gas gage doesn't work, but it has a full tank of gas. Lol, I hope it's not the fuel pump!

Anything else I should look for?

Thanks,

Jim

PS; I asked him about the fuel filter, and "nobody knows" how old it is. So that's on the list either way.. but I never fixed a broken vehicle with a simple fuel filter.

Phil V
01-06-2015, 02:05 AM
Jim, a simple roadside check to see if there is fuel pressure is push the schrader valve in on the fuel rail for just a second. If it sprays gas then you know it has enough fuel to fire the engine. It could also be a fuel pump relay if there is no or very little fuel pressure at the schrader valve. It could also be a bad ignition module. I always thought an ignition module was either good or bad but based on past experience that's not true. They can be faulty and the vehicle will run like crap or not run at all. Check for spark at the plug quickly after the engine dies. You can also remove the ignition module and take it to a place like O'rielley's or Autozone and they have test equipment to cycle it several times to see if it's good or bad.

I'd start with those checks

style
01-06-2015, 02:58 AM
I have an svt lightening motor an trans ill sell him for it.. next time it dies swap the relays ac one an fp one an see what happens other then what jonny5 said there isnt much else on that old junker..

LS6
01-06-2015, 03:31 AM
Hey guys, can I ask some advice again?

My friend's truck has something wrong with it, and he asked me to help figure it out..

He said he was driving down the road, and it just died out. This road is about 30 mph, with stoplights, so it might've been stop and go traffic. He said it took a minute or two to get it fired up again, and he then managed to get it off the road, but then it died out again. So he got it towed home..

It didn't overheat, but he said he "almost" overheated it about a week ago.

I met him at his place and he fired it up for me. It started fine, real quick, and it ran smooth. But then it died out after about 20 seconds. We never touched the gas pedal.

Tomorrow morning I'm gonna go over there with my fuel pressure gage and vacuum gage... but I don't really know what to look for.

I figure we'll check the fuel pressure regulator, and the fuel pressure itself, but is there anything else I could look for? I'd appreciate any advice.

It's a '98 Ford Explorer.. 2WD, V-6, fuel injected..
And the gas gage doesn't work, but it has a full tank of gas. Lol, I hope it's not the fuel pump!

Anything else I should look for?

Thanks,

Jim

PS; I asked him about the fuel filter, and "nobody knows" how old it is. So that's on the list either way.. but I never fixed a broken vehicle with a simple fuel filter.



I asked him about the fuel filter, and "nobody knows" how old it is. So that's on the list either way.. but I never fixed a broken vehicle with a simple fuel filter.
Yes, a dirty fuel filter can be the problem. Check it first.
LS6

Jim2
01-06-2015, 04:21 AM
Yes, a dirty fuel filter can be the problem. Check it first.
LS6

One way or the other, the fuel filter will get replaced. But I doubt that will solve the problem LS.. I never managed to fix a broke vehicle by simply replacing the fuel filter. .... a clean filter might help it run better, but I never saw a vehicle cut out like that because of the filter. This would be a first for me if it's just a filter..

Jim2
01-06-2015, 04:27 AM
I have an svt lightening motor an trans ill sell him for it.. next time it dies swap the relays ac one an fp one an see what happens other then what jonny5 said there isnt much else on that old junker..

how much would it cost to ship to Hawaii? Lol

"...next time it dies swap the relays ac one an fp one" ...I don't know what you're saying there style. Can you put it into terms that a carpenter would understand?

Jim2
01-06-2015, 04:35 AM
Jim, a simple roadside check to see if there is fuel pressure is push the schrader valve in on the fuel rail for just a second. If it sprays gas then you know it has enough fuel to fire the engine. It could also be a fuel pump relay if there is no or very little fuel pressure at the schrader valve. It could also be a bad ignition module. I always thought an ignition module was either good or bad but based on past experience that's not true. They can be faulty and the vehicle will run like crap or not run at all. Check for spark at the plug quickly after the engine dies. You can also remove the ignition module and take it to a place like O'rielley's or Autozone and they have test equipment to cycle it several times to see if it's good or bad.

I'd start with those checks

I don't understand how the ignition module could be the problem Phil. Is there a way I could check it with a multi-meter?

Phil V
01-06-2015, 08:02 AM
I don't understand how the ignition module could be the problem Phil. Is there a way I could check it with a multi-meter?

Not really. Pull any plug wire and stick a spark plug in the end and ground the base of the spark plug on a good ground. Then crank the engine over. If it has a nice blue spark then you know it's not ignition. If you push the schrader valve on the fuel rail and either nothing comes out or a light dribble then you know it's fuel related. It can only be either it's not getting spark or it's not getting fuel. It boils down to just those two things (we know it didn't jump time, which could have been another issue).

What Style was telling you is swap the AC relay with the FP (fuel pump) relay. The both use the same relay. If the fuel pump relay was bad then it would run by replacing it with the AC relay. I really doubt it's the fuel filter, remotely possible but very remotely possible. There is whole long list of things that could cause the cutting out problem of your buddies truck. Start with the basics of fuel pressure and spark then go from there. Most people who know anything about vehicles overthink a problem and look for remote possibilities. Start with the basics.

Mooch
01-06-2015, 08:31 AM
It could be crap in the gas tank . The pump has a very fine mesh filter and sometimes after running a while it will clog and after it sits the crap falls off enough to let it run again . My 2000 Windstar did just that . And a fuel filter has been known to do that .


mooch

LS6
01-06-2015, 02:49 PM
I don't understand how the ignition module could be the problem Phil. Is there a way I could check it with a multi-meter?

The ignition module can be the problem, but it will usually make the car stop dead.
Check the most obvious things first. Gas problem? Ignition problem? Narrow it down, one thing at at time, starting with the simplest fixes first.

You already said that this guy didn't change the gas filter for a very long time. What else didn't he change? You will, no doubt find multiple problems.
LS6

carcrazy
01-06-2015, 04:30 PM
Don't know much about those trucks but I HAVE had a fuel filter do exactly as you describe and replacement did fix the issue-perhaps you'll get lucky. I've also had an issue with the gas tank venting system-drive for awhile and then just quit. Let it sit for a few minutes and it would start and run for a few miles and then quit again. Not sure it would apply to this vehicle.

Henry
01-06-2015, 05:42 PM
One way or the other, the fuel filter will get replaced. But I doubt that will solve the problem LS.. I never managed to fix a broke vehicle by simply replacing the fuel filter. .... a clean filter might help it run better, but I never saw a vehicle cut out like that because of the filter. This would be a first for me if it's just a filter..

I know it has fuel injection but often there is a fuel bowl or other throttle body type thing. Anyway, see if there is an area you could pour or spray a little gas into or spray a little FI cleaner in. Then hurry and see if it starts or about starts with that. If yes, then you have a fuel delivery problem.

Don't go messing with any of the electronic sensors as there is nothing short of replacing them that you guys could do. Jim, this is like with your truck, you need someone who KNOWS how to use a diagnostic device to the fullest extent - not just look up codes.

Speaking of that did it run long enough to set off a check engine light. You can just check the computer to find any last errors if not.

IF it was the fuel pump you would have to drop the tank. Not all that much of a chore except for me cause I too sore to do it. The other way around dropping the tank is check for a factory cover on the inside over the fuel filter area. That Ford may have one. Many vehicles have access plates you could unbolt. I can't believe that last POS Escorts had access plates under the back seat.

Listen, Polish/Italian way around that too if no access plate - CUT one from the top and lift the fuel pump right out. Make sure you clean all the dirt off the top of the tank before removing the pump or it will all fall inside the tank. You can do it good buddy. If not, Brian would love to help you; just get him there and he'll have that thing purring in the time a 2 week vacation would take.

Lastly, there is a reason why they call them 'Exploders'.

Henry

Phil V
01-06-2015, 06:08 PM
Quote from Jim " It's a '98 Ford Explorer.. 2WD, V-6, fuel injected.. And the gas gage doesn't work, but it has a full tank of gas. Lol, I hope it's not the fuel pump! "
(end quote).

Well, there you go ! If the fuel gauge isn't working then the engine thinks there is no gas in the tank and therefore just can't run, right ? (LOL, just kidding).

Henry
01-06-2015, 06:18 PM
Quote from Jim " It's a '98 Ford Explorer.. 2WD, V-6, fuel injected.. And the gas gage doesn't work, but it has a full tank of gas. Lol, I hope it's not the fuel pump! "
(end quote).

Well, there you go ! If the fuel gauge isn't working then the engine thinks there is no gas in the tank and therefore just can't run, right ? (LOL, just kidding).

That's not too funny because you might be just right. Maybe not on the Exploder but on something!

Henry

KVP
01-06-2015, 08:36 PM
My 2002 Sierra acted up in the exact same way recently. It was the fuel pump, and my wallet is now considerably lighter.:(

Phil V
01-07-2015, 03:08 PM
So Jim, let's hear what the problem was with your buddies Explorer ?

All Dry
01-08-2015, 12:09 AM
So Jim, let's hear what the problem was with your buddies Explorer ? He will get back to you he's probably checking the blinker fluid now.

Jim2
01-08-2015, 01:00 AM
Sorry for the delay guys... For some reason, the link wasn't working last night. I couldn't even find the thread..

Gimme a minute to get caught up, I'll be right back..

Jim2
01-08-2015, 01:01 AM
He will get back to you he's probably checking the blinker fluid now.
Lol Mike, the blinker fluid was all good. I didn't check the muffler bearing yet though..

Jim2
01-08-2015, 02:07 AM
I know it has fuel injection but often there is a fuel bowl or other throttle body type thing. Anyway, see if there is an area you could pour or spray a little gas into or spray a little FI cleaner in. Then hurry and see if it starts or about starts with that. If yes, then you have a fuel delivery problem.

Don't go messing with any of the electronic sensors as there is nothing short of replacing them that you guys could do. Jim, this is like with your truck, you need someone who KNOWS how to use a diagnostic device to the fullest extent - not just look up codes.

Speaking of that did it run long enough to set off a check engine light. You can just check the computer to find any last errors if not.

IF it was the fuel pump you would have to drop the tank. Not all that much of a chore except for me cause I too sore to do it. The other way around dropping the tank is check for a factory cover on the inside over the fuel filter area. That Ford may have one. Many vehicles have access plates you could unbolt. I can't believe that last POS Escorts had access plates under the back seat.

Listen, Polish/Italian way around that too if no access plate - CUT one from the top and lift the fuel pump right out. Make sure you clean all the dirt off the top of the tank before removing the pump or it will all fall inside the tank. You can do it good buddy. If not, Brian would love to help you; just get him there and he'll have that thing purring in the time a 2 week vacation would take.

Lastly, there is a reason why they call them 'Exploders'.

Henry

Thanks for all the details Henry, here's the latest.

I went over there yesterday morning and the first thing was the fuel pressure test.

As soon as he turned the key on, the pressure shot to 67 psi. It held steady and idled smooth. When I revved it up to the "mid range", there seemed to be a slight miss, and the fuel pressure stayed at 67. ... from what I found in other searches, I thought the pressure is supposed to go up a little at maintained revs..??

I put a vacuum gage on the brake booster line, and it held steady @ 19. It looked good, no bouncing around... At WOT, it dropped to 2, then jumped to 25, then settled right back at 19. ... it idled smooth.

While it sat there idling, there was water leaking. It looked orange... Maybe it was just rust, but I haven't ruled out oil yet either. That one is yet to be determined.

And, I was wrong about the year. It's a 2002 Exploder with the 4.0 SOHC engine. It's the kind that has a mini truck bed in the back, so if we have to go after the fuel pump, we'll probably just remove the bed. From what I'm told, the gas tank is full...

One way or the other, it's getting a new fuel filter. I'll be amazed if that solves it.

Since it's an intermittent problem, it's hard to diagnose.

Jim2
01-08-2015, 02:57 AM
PS Henry, I didn't check the engine light, but I don't think it's on. I think Frank would've mentioned that.

I don't have that good scanner anymore, so I didn't even try to check any of that stuff.

Bob K
01-08-2015, 10:42 AM
It sounds like the fuel pump is good. I don't work on Fords much but I'll tell you about my Buick with an intermittent problem. About 6 years ago it started. The car would start and run every time I tried however on first start of the day it would misfire on number one cylinder. This would last for about 5 miles then clear up for the day and never miss again. It seemed to happen on damp days only. The check engine would flash until the miss cleared up at 5 miles. The code for miss on cylinder 1 would set. Over the years I changed all the spark plugs, all the plug wires, the coil for cylinder 1 and the base that the coils bolt onto that contains the computer for the coils. I changed fuel filter and the injector for that cylinder. I would never know if what I did fixed the problem because the engine always worked after it was warm and started well cold 80% of the time. Then some time in the next month it would do it again. I asked many mechanics and nobody had a good idea. Finally my nephew said it sounded like a crank position sensor problem. I switched that out about a year ago and it has been running well since then.

I'm not trying to say that is your problem but it could be one of the sensors that control the engine and they can be a real pain to find if they are intermittent. I wish you luck.

Bob K

Henry
01-08-2015, 11:16 AM
Thanks for all the details Henry, here's the latest.

I went over there yesterday morning and the first thing was the fuel pressure test.

As soon as he turned the key on, the pressure shot to 67 psi. It held steady and idled smooth. When I revved it up to the "mid range", there seemed to be a slight miss, and the fuel pressure stayed at 67. ... from what I found in other searches, I thought the pressure is supposed to go up a little at maintained revs..??

I put a vacuum gage on the brake booster line, and it held steady @ 19. It looked good, no bouncing around... At WOT, it dropped to 2, then jumped to 25, then settled right back at 19. ... it idled smooth.

While it sat there idling, there was water leaking. It looked orange... Maybe it was just rust, but I haven't ruled out oil yet either. That one is yet to be determined.

And, I was wrong about the year. It's a 2002 Exploder with the 4.0 SOHC engine. It's the kind that has a mini truck bed in the back, so if we have to go after the fuel pump, we'll probably just remove the bed. From what I'm told, the gas tank is full...

One way or the other, it's getting a new fuel filter. I'll be amazed if that solves it.

Since it's an intermittent problem, it's hard to diagnose.

Jim, no sense to dive into the 11 foot side of the pool if you can't swim. Crank that sucker over while force feeding it some gas. If it starts and runs even for a couple/few seconds then it's a fuel delivery problem.

Henry

Jim2
01-09-2015, 01:04 AM
Jim, no sense to dive into the 11 foot side of the pool if you can't swim. Crank that sucker over while force feeding it some gas. If it starts and runs even for a couple/few seconds then it's a fuel delivery problem.

Henry

Lol Henry, I can swim a little bit.. and I always like learning more about cars anyway. At least it ain't my own car this time.. ;)

When I first saw it, Sunday afternoon, the tow truck was just dropping it off. ... We started it, and it fired right up. It ran for maybe almost a minute, and then it idled down and stalled out.

When I went back to test things, I had a can of starter fluid with me. But it fired right up and idled smooth for about 10 minutes, so I never got to test it with the starter fluid.

Tomorrow, Frank plans to change the water pump and the fuel filters.. Seems like a good place to start, it needs a water pump anyway... I'll post more when I know more, thanks Henry!

Jim2
01-09-2015, 01:26 AM
It sounds like the fuel pump is good. I don't work on Fords much but I'll tell you about my Buick with an intermittent problem. About 6 years ago it started. The car would start and run every time I tried however on first start of the day it would misfire on number one cylinder. This would last for about 5 miles then clear up for the day and never miss again. It seemed to happen on damp days only. The check engine would flash until the miss cleared up at 5 miles. The code for miss on cylinder 1 would set. Over the years I changed all the spark plugs, all the plug wires, the coil for cylinder 1 and the base that the coils bolt onto that contains the computer for the coils. I changed fuel filter and the injector for that cylinder. I would never know if what I did fixed the problem because the engine always worked after it was warm and started well cold 80% of the time. Then some time in the next month it would do it again. I asked many mechanics and nobody had a good idea. Finally my nephew said it sounded like a crank position sensor problem. I switched that out about a year ago and it has been running well since then.

I'm not trying to say that is your problem but it could be one of the sensors that control the engine and they can be a real pain to find if they are intermittent. I wish you luck.

Bob K

Thanks Bob, I appreciate it. "Intermittent" problems suck.. and without that good scanner, there's no way to get the details of what happened when it died out.

The truck has almost 150K on it, so I guess it might be getting to the point where a sensor could go out, but there's are a few other things that need to be done first anyway. My buddy Frank is planning to do the water pump and fuel filters tomorrow, and I'll probably get another look at it over the weekend. I'll post the results, thanks again Bob!

Henry
01-09-2015, 04:09 AM
Lol Henry, I can swim a little bit.. and I always like learning more about cars anyway. At least it ain't my own car this time.. ;)

When I first saw it, Sunday afternoon, the tow truck was just dropping it off. ... We started it, and it fired right up. It ran for maybe almost a minute, and then it idled down and stalled out.

When I went back to test things, I had a can of starter fluid with me. But it fired right up and idled smooth for about 10 minutes, so I never got to test it with the starter fluid.

Tomorrow, Frank plans to change the water pump and the fuel filters.. Seems like a good place to start, it needs a water pump anyway... I'll post more when I know more, thanks Henry!

If this thing starts when cold and dies later it could very well be the catalytic converter. Like holding your nose and trying to breath and not through your mouth either. It's really not that uncommon.

Henry

All Dry
01-10-2015, 02:15 AM
If this thing starts when cold and dies later it could very well be the catalytic converter. Like holding your nose and trying to breath and not through your mouth either. It's really not that uncommon.

Henry You should be able to check an exhaust restriction with a vacuum test.

Jim2
01-10-2015, 02:50 AM
You should be able to check an exhaust restriction with a vacuum test.

Yup, thanks Mike, I've done that test in the past. I forget the exact details, but I think you hold it open for a a minute or so, and see if the vacuum drops... I'll have to look it up again..

My buddy Frank mentioned the catalyst too, but my gut feeling is that it's something else. I held it at about 3000 rpms for about a minute, and the vacuum gage held steady. I have to look up the details about how to do that test again, but, considering the lack of care that this truck got, I hope we find something simpler (cheaper) than that. The cat is an expensive part. Even at the scrapyard, cats bring a good price. There's some expensive material in there...

The vacuum test showed that the valves and rings are good. I'm hoping (and expecting) to find a simple problem.

When I get word about the water pump and fuel filters, I'll let you guys know...

Frank is thinking that maybe the temp gage isn't working right, and it was actually just overheating, but I don't think so.
When I first saw it, it wasn't smoking or boiling or anything.
It wasn't pinging either. It started right up, idled smooth, and then stalled out within a minute.

The next day, it started right up and idled smooth for about ten minutes. But it did have a slight miss miss when I revved it up to the midrange. The vacuum gage didn't show anything, but I could hear it.

Jim2
01-10-2015, 02:58 AM
This is a great link to understanding what the vacuum gage is telling you.

http://www.therangerstation.com/Magazine/Summer2003/VacuumLeaks.shtml

Henry
01-10-2015, 10:48 AM
You should be able to check an exhaust restriction with a vacuum test.

With a plugged converter that was just about at the end of its life the gage would not show a restriction UNTIL the engine got hot. I've driven cars with bad cats that ran just fine until the car got hot and then SWELLED which cut off the flow out. I had it happen twice so I mentioned it.

ON CATS: For anyone out there that thinks they need to start a car not driven in the winter, once a week just to "keep the oils flowing", know this. What you are also doing is dumping raw gas (cold engine) into the cat. The engine, for most who do this never gets hot enough to burn out all this gas (starts to store itself in the cat by absortion). A car / truck engine have to be driven

Bob K
01-10-2015, 11:11 AM
I had a catalytic converter problem on my Trailblazer. The front of the converter had a dent in the bottom from hitting something on the road. Several years later I started having problems with slight overheating. After a lot of searching for causes I took the front exhaust pipe that holds the cat off and when I was handling it some particles fell out the engine side. I cut the pipe in front of the cat and found it was almost completely blocked with vermiculite. The dent had caused a little chip in the cat ceramic matrix. That let the vermiculite that holds the matrix in place get exposed to the exhaust flow. That vermiculite is soft and fluffy and it plugged the cat. To fix it I put the pipe back on the car for alignment, then cut the pipe on the back side of the cat and just turned it around so the cat was in backwards. I tack welded it in place, removed the pipe and did a complete weld with it on the shop floor. Put it back on the car and it never gave me another problem. That was at least 3 years ago. If any more of the vermiculite sloughs off it will go to a chamber of the muffler but there isn't enough of it in the cat to plug the muffler with it's bigger passages.

Bob K

Jim2
01-22-2015, 11:46 PM
Sorry for the long delay, but here's the latest..

My buddy Frank took a swing at it, but he didn't get too far with it. He replaced the water pump, but there was still a leak up by the thermostat.

Today, I finally got over there and took a shot at it myself. Things have changed...

When I got there... the fan, belt, and cowl, was already removed.

I brought a new thermostat and o-ring with me, but then I found that the thermostat cover was damaged where it meets the o-ring. So I went to the store, and a new cover was only $14... so I replaced it.

Frank had already bought a crank position sensor, so I replaced that too. He said water was dripping all over the old one, and made a mess, so he wanted to replace it as a matter of course..

So far, so good. It was all easy.

Since the truck ran last time I saw it, I figured I'd just do the fuel filter and then button everything up. Things were looking bright. But then it went downhill from there..

I couldn't get the damn lines off the fuel filter. I even shot PB-Blaster in there, but no go.... Frank said he tried "three times" himself, and he was just fed up with it already. ... There was a small dent in the old filter, where Frank was trying to get leverage on it, but "all in all" it looked fine. There was no corrosion, and the lines ain't frozen up... I just couldn't get it to release.. maybe I need a different tool...

So we decided to leave the fuel filter and button it up.

When we started it, it fired right up, and then stalled out in less than a minute.

Shooting carb cleaner in there helped to keep it running, so I checked the fuel pressure again. This time, it only showed about 10 psi.. which seems strange because last time I checked it, it held nicely at about 67 psi.

Something has changed since last time I saw it...

Maybe the fuel pump is getting ready to quit after all, but, it would suck to replace to the fuel pump for nothing..

I didn't try swapping the relays that Style mentioned, I don't know which is which yet..

I checked all the fuses, and there's one in the dash that's burned out, but I don't know what it's for yet.

So anyway, that's where it's at right now.. I'll post more when I know more...

Cheers, and thanks to everyone for the tips! :thumb:

Jim2
01-22-2015, 11:51 PM
I had a catalytic converter problem on my Trailblazer. The front of the converter had a dent in the bottom from hitting something on the road. Several years later I started having problems with slight overheating. After a lot of searching for causes I took the front exhaust pipe that holds the cat off and when I was handling it some particles fell out the engine side. I cut the pipe in front of the cat and found it was almost completely blocked with vermiculite. The dent had caused a little chip in the cat ceramic matrix. That let the vermiculite that holds the matrix in place get exposed to the exhaust flow. That vermiculite is soft and fluffy and it plugged the cat. To fix it I put the pipe back on the car for alignment, then cut the pipe on the back side of the cat and just turned it around so the cat was in backwards. I tack welded it in place, removed the pipe and did a complete weld with it on the shop floor. Put it back on the car and it never gave me another problem. That was at least 3 years ago. If any more of the vermiculite sloughs off it will go to a chamber of the muffler but there isn't enough of it in the cat to plug the muffler with it's bigger passages.

Bob K

Haha! That's brilliant Bob! I'm gonna remember that one for sure :)

Bob K
01-23-2015, 01:51 AM
Fuel pressure regulator could be stuck open and letting the pressure fall. That should be a cheap fix. Hook up the gauge and cranking the engine. If the fuel pressure drops then pinch the return hose with a pliers to keep the fuel pressure up to see if that keeps it running. That should tell you if the regulator is bad.

Bob K

Jim2
01-23-2015, 02:49 AM
Fuel pressure regulator could be stuck open and letting the pressure fall. That should be a cheap fix. Hook up the gauge and cranking the engine. If the fuel pressure drops then pinch the return hose with a pliers to keep the fuel pressure up to see if that keeps it running. That should tell you if the regulator is bad.

Bob K

Thanks Bob, the fuel pressure regulator is one of the things I was wondering about at first, but I couldn't even find the damn thing.

I didn't look for it today, but I'm guessing that it's hidden behind the intake manifold. On my own truck, I need a mirror to see it...


..pinch the return hose with a pliers to keep the fuel pressure up...

So, that means that the vacuum closes it?

I'm trying to understand how it works. And how it applies to what I saw today when I did the fuel pressure test again.

To be specific about the pressure test... It went like this. The gage went up to about 10psi with the key in the "on" position, and then it tapered back down.

The truck would start , and then stall in less than a minute.

Right after is stalls, it might "start" one or two more times, but it dies out fast.. and then won't start for a minute or two.

And then the whole cycle repeats.

Henry
01-23-2015, 10:25 AM
Since the truck ran last time I saw it, I figured I'd just do the fuel filter and then button everything up. Things were looking bright. But then it went downhill from there..

I couldn't get the damn lines off the fuel filter. I even shot PB-Blaster in there, but no go.... Frank said he tried "three times" himself, and he was just fed up with it already. ... There was a small dent in the old filter, where Frank was trying to get leverage on it, but "all in all" it looked fine. There was no corrosion, and the lines ain't frozen up... I just couldn't get it to release.. maybe I need a different tool...

So we decided to leave the fuel filter and button it up.

When we started it, it fired right up, and then stalled out in less than a minute.



Jim, I think it is indeed a fuel delivery problem. That fuel filter bothers me as well. Normally, when things are tight to get off one would apply heat. DO NOT DO THAT for this!!! See if there is room to put a pipe over the wrenches used to loosen the filter for leverage.

The last resort you can do is cut the fuel line cleanly and install a new filter making up fittings (use double hose clamps) to fit the area. For us, all that area is nothing but rust. I picture your vehicle undercarriages nice and clean-YES? Fix the easy stuff first. I suspect the fuel filter is like having a pineapple up your ass and trying to fart - know what I mean. Maybe my buddy LS6 can illustrate that!

Good luck you guys, as we shovel snow this weekend. Of course, I will NOT shovel snow. I gave my wife a soup ladle years ago for snow removal in the 180 foot driveway. There's a plow on one of my Blazers. If that don't start or work, then you know what, "The LORD giveth and the LORD or mother nature will take away". Good luck.

Henry

Bob K
01-23-2015, 11:07 AM
Sorry, I should have first said only squeeze rubber lines. The hard plastic lines won't work for that. I can't help but in a general way because I don't work on any Fords and I don't know their fuel pressure requirements. On a GM, the fuel pressure regulators I've dealt with are spring controlled. They screw into the fuel rail and open up when the pressure gets to high. The line they dump into takes the fuel back to the tank. If you were to pinch the line then the pressure would not be able to fall because of the regulator opening. You would need to have a fuel pressure gauge on the fuel port to see what is happening. If the regulator was stuck open pinching the return line would simulate a working regulator and the fuel pressure would go up and the engine would start. If I don't see 50 pounds of pressure on the fuel line I don't even try to crank the engine. It won't start with low fuel pressure. My fuel pump only runs for 2 seconds when the key is turned on. If I ran the tank out of fuel I switch the ignition on and off maybe 10 times to make sure fuel pressure is up before I start cranking the engine. The fuel pump should quit after 2 seconds if the engine is not running or cranking. That's a safety feature that prevents the electric pump from feeding a fire after the engine has been shut off or quits running.

You should be able to squeeze two white plastic tabs on the fuel line to open it. They act like a fish hook once you push them on you can't pull then apart. The harder you pull the harder they grab. To release them squeeze them to the line, then push them and the line in toward the filter to let the edge that locks them relax then while still squeezing the line should slip out with only a little pull. If you tried forcing them with a lever they may be damaged and never work easily again. Check the new filter. It should have new locks. you can get an idea how they work looking at them in hand. Then you will get the idea how you need to squeeze them to get the shape you want to release the line.

Bob K

Henry
01-23-2015, 12:57 PM
You should be able to squeeze two white plastic tabs on the fuel line to open it. They act like a fish hook once you push them on you can't pull then apart. The harder you pull the harder they grab. To release them squeeze them to the line, then push them and the line in toward the filter to let the edge that locks them relax then while still squeezing the line should slip out with only a little pull. If you tried forcing them with a lever they may be damaged and never work easily again. Check the new filter. It should have new locks. you can get an idea how they work looking at them in hand. Then you will get the idea how you need to squeeze them to get the shape you want to release the line.
Bob K

Bob, I'm not sure but I don't think Ford has this GM type snap connection. I thin a Ford filter is threaded for a threaded fitting on the gas line. Maybe Jim can help us out here. The snap fit connections you're talking about are a 'no brainer' and I found them to be a PIA when blindly trying to do the squeeze to disconnect them say on top of the fuel tank prior to removing the tank. Can be a little tricky.

It's amazing to me that the secure the fuel SO well and actually have movement to them when installed properly.

Jim, tell us how that filer is connected to the fuel lines?

Henry

Jim2
01-23-2015, 10:42 PM
The first few seconds of this vid shows the connection type for this filter.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hkZRSMGqQ0E

I don't need to make the "special tool" out of a sharpie though. I have the tool already..

There's a spring inside that needs to be stretched, and then it should just release.

I've only replaced these fuel filters a couple times. Some are easier than others. But this one just wouldn't release.. I hope the springs aren't damaged.

Jim2
01-23-2015, 10:53 PM
... For us, all that area is nothing but rust. I picture your vehicle undercarriages nice and clean-YES? Fix the easy stuff first. ...

Henry

Yeah Henry, out here, cars are pretty clean underneath. They rust faster on top, but nothing like the "road-salt rust" on the east coast.

Jim2
01-23-2015, 11:08 PM
...You should be able to squeeze two white plastic tabs on the fuel line to open it. They act like a fish hook once you push them on you can't pull then apart. The harder you pull the harder they grab. To release them squeeze them to the line, then push them and the line in toward the filter to let the edge that locks them relax then while still squeezing the line should slip out with only a little pull. If you tried forcing them with a lever they may be damaged and never work easily again. Check the new filter. It should have new locks. you can get an idea how they work looking at them in hand. Then you will get the idea how you need to squeeze them to get the shape you want to release the line.

Bob K

That sounds like the connectors on my old '88 Ranger. I liked those connectors, they were easy.

This one, I wrestled with them for a half hour, and I couldn't get any of them loose. There's three lines on this filter..

I really think I have the wrong tool, or else the springs were already damaged..

Bob K
01-24-2015, 02:24 AM
I see what you have. I've done those too. I have a set of plastic tools that go over several different sized fuel lines. They are built in a "C" shape and slip over the pipe just where the video showed putting the sharpie piece. If you pull too hard on the fitting before the tool is installed you may damage the clip that latches onto that flange on the pipe. The trick is to install the tool push it against the host then while holding the tool from sliding back toward the filter, push the hose back toward the filter so the keeper slides onto the nose of the tool. That will spread the keeper enough to slip over the flange and slide off the pipe.

Bob K

Jim2
01-24-2015, 04:42 PM
I see what you have. I've done those too. I have a set of plastic tools that go over several different sized fuel lines. They are built in a "C" shape and slip over the pipe just where the video showed putting the sharpie piece. If you pull too hard on the fitting before the tool is installed you may damage the clip that latches onto that flange on the pipe. The trick is to install the tool push it against the host then while holding the tool from sliding back toward the filter, push the hose back toward the filter so the keeper slides onto the nose of the tool. That will spread the keeper enough to slip over the flange and slide off the pipe.

Bob K

Thanks Bob, that's the tool I'm talking about. I did push the line onto the tool before trying to pull it off, but it just wouldn't release.

Frank is pretty strong, so I hope he didn't damage the springs when he tried (three times) to get it off. Like I said, there's a small dent in the filter from him trying to use leverage. I don't know... I'll have to jack it up a little higher and take another shot at it. Maybe a little grease will help too.

The filter on my own truck is the same type, and it was pretty easy when I did mine. There was one other that I did that was a bit harder, but not as tough as this one.

Bob K
01-24-2015, 06:55 PM
If the filter spins when you twist it then grease won't help. If it spins then the hoses should slide off with the same effort. I sounds like the internal fingers are latched down on that flange quite hard. Nothing says you have to stay with the factory setup. You can cut the quick disconnect fittings off the lines and hook up a different kind of filter with rubber fuel line and hose clamps. Just be sure to use fuel line and fittings that can take 100 pounds of pressure to be on the safe side. An auto parts store should be able to set you up with a filter that is designed to go where none was installed before. It is nice to keep it located away from the engine so if it fails it isn't in close proximity to ignition sources.

Bob K

Bob K
01-24-2015, 06:59 PM
Some filters have fittings that break lines screw into. I like those cause you can get lengths of break line and bend them as you like to relocate a filter.

Bob K

Jim2
01-25-2015, 03:44 PM
Thanks again Bob, but it turns out that I just needed a better tool..

Here's the one I was using, but it wasn't working..

http://i58.photobucket.com/albums/g267/jimguitars/2002%20Explorer/IMG_1155_zpsnofrkoim.jpg

So we went and bought this one, and the filter was off in 5 minutes..

http://i58.photobucket.com/albums/g267/jimguitars/2002%20Explorer/IMG_1156_zpsmsg26ojt.jpg

This is the old filter

http://i58.photobucket.com/albums/g267/jimguitars/2002%20Explorer/IMG_1154_zpsalt0qosl.jpg

And this is the new one

http://i58.photobucket.com/albums/g267/jimguitars/2002%20Explorer/IMG_1159_zpsji3uhenr.jpg

Henry
01-25-2015, 03:57 PM
Thanks again Bob, but it turns out that I just needed a better tool..

Here's the one I was using, but it wasn't working..

http://i58.photobucket.com/albums/g267/jimguitars/2002%20Explorer/IMG_1155_zpsnofrkoim.jpg

So we went and bought this one, and the filter was off in 5 minutes..

http://i58.photobucket.com/albums/g267/jimguitars/2002%20Explorer/IMG_1156_zpsmsg26ojt.jpg

This is the old filter

http://i58.photobucket.com/albums/g267/jimguitars/2002%20Explorer/IMG_1154_zpsalt0qosl.jpg

And this is the new one

http://i58.photobucket.com/albums/g267/jimguitars/2002%20Explorer/IMG_1159_zpsji3uhenr.jpg

Jim, I thought that top picture which stood alone on the screen when it opened was of 2 mushrooms since LS6 expresses himself with funny stuff. Then I realized.

The bottom 2 pics = NO RUST you've gotta be kidding me! That's gotta be nice dude.

Henry

Bob K
01-25-2015, 03:57 PM
I see why that wasn't working, but the big question is did the truck run?

Bob K

Jim2
01-25-2015, 04:10 PM
The fuel pressure was still low after changing the filter. It was at about 30-40 psi. I think it's supposed to be 65-70 psi.

We swapped the relays like Style suggested, but that didn't make any difference either.

I tried looking for the fuel pressure regulator, but this truck doesn't have one...

So we pulled the bed off, lowered the tank, and got the fuel pump out.

http://i58.photobucket.com/albums/g267/jimguitars/2002%20Explorer/IMG_1165_zpsnq529jhp.jpg

http://i58.photobucket.com/albums/g267/jimguitars/2002%20Explorer/IMG_1163_zpsxsxvcvgj.jpg

Lowering the tank was pretty easy on this one, even with a full tank... there's only one strap at the back, and the front stays in place.

http://i58.photobucket.com/albums/g267/jimguitars/2002%20Explorer/IMG_1166_zpskcd2fjqt.jpg

We tested the pump in a bucket of water and it seems to be pumping fine... http://vid58.photobucket.com/albums/g267/jimguitars/2002%20Explorer/IMG_1169_zpscgotnfce.mp4

Jim2
01-25-2015, 04:15 PM
I see why that wasn't working, but the big question is did the truck run?

Bob K

Well, it did run Bob, but the pressure still looks low..

When the key is turned on, it goes up to about 30 psi. At idle, the pressure slowly drops down, and then stalls when the throttle is opened.

Jim2
01-25-2015, 04:20 PM
Jim, I thought that top picture which stood alone on the screen when it opened was of 2 mushrooms since LS6 expresses himself with funny stuff. Then I realized.

The bottom 2 pics = NO RUST you've gotta be kidding me! That's gotta be nice dude.

Henry

Lol Henry, "mushrooms"..

Yeah, the bottom side is pretty clean. And, for around here, this truck is kinda "dirty" lol..

http://i58.photobucket.com/albums/g267/jimguitars/2002%20Explorer/IMG_1168_zps6nvetzix.jpg

Henry
01-25-2015, 04:29 PM
Lol Henry, "mushrooms"..

Yeah, the bottom side is pretty clean. And, for around here, this truck is kinda "dirty" lol..

http://i58.photobucket.com/albums/g267/jimguitars/2002%20Explorer/IMG_1168_zps6nvetzix.jpg

Jim, you lived in Jersey and now Hawaii. You've been on this site for a long time. You've seen the rusty crap we have to deal with. Look at the old woody that JUNK is doing.

Is there really such a thing as a RESTO where you are or is it just "newly painted"? Look at the exhaust bolts on that picture and the brake and fuel lines and frame. Nice way to live. Too bad they just don't run over there.

Henry

Jim2
01-25-2015, 05:04 PM
Jim, you lived in Jersey and now Hawaii. You've been on this site for a long time. You've seen the rusty crap we have to deal with. Look at the old woody that JUNK is doing.

Is there really such a thing as a RESTO where you are or is it just "newly painted"? Look at the exhaust bolts on that picture and the brake and fuel lines and frame. Nice way to live. Too bad they just don't run over there.

Henry

yeah Henry, I remember all the "road salt rust" back in NJ. And I don't miss it either.

Out here, the sun cooks the clear coat, so cars tend to rust on top more than on bottom. Older Japanese cars are the worst. I've had a couple that had holes in the roof.

I just double checked the fuel pressure spec for this Explorer, and it's supposed to be 64-75 psi.

The way the pressure only goes up to 30-40, and then tapers down, can't be right.. we're gonna try to rig up a way to test the pressure of this fuel pump. It should be interesting, but the pump "looks" like it's pumping just fine..

Where else could it be losing pressure?

Jim2
01-25-2015, 11:14 PM
http://i58.photobucket.com/albums/g267/jimguitars/2002%20Explorer/IMG_1259_zpspicrauhs.jpg

This was crazy. When I got there today, Frank was just getting back from Home Depot with a bag of goodies.

He bought a water pressure gage (for plumbing), a bunch of fittings and adapters, and some fuel line.

So we hooked it all up and tested the fuel pump in a bucket of water. The pump pushed 100 psi. We did the test twice, and got the same number both times. Each test was only for about 15 seconds.


So we put it back in and tested the pressure at the rail again. At first, it jumped up to about 60 psi but it didn't hold. It would drop down to about 35 pretty fast, and then it would continue to go down slowly after that.

When we first started it, she idled smooth for about 2 or 3 minutes before winding down and stalling.

After running it, the pressure only comes up to 35 with the key on.

After a few minutes, the pressure will come back up to 60 with the key on, and then it drops down again.

It seems to settle at about 30-35 psi, and it will start like that, but when I opened the throttle, she just bogged.

continued...

Jim2
01-25-2015, 11:27 PM
... and then I noticed that the muffler was leaking..

http://i58.photobucket.com/albums/g267/jimguitars/2002%20Explorer/IMG_1262_zpsb6paiks7.jpg

Probably just condensation, but it seemed like quite a bit of water coming out. It was dripping at the connection behind the Cat too.

The water and oil look good.. It doesn't look like there's any oil in the radiator, nor water in the oil..

Jim2
01-25-2015, 11:43 PM
here it is at 10 psi, idling down, and she just bogs when the throttle is opened.

http://s58.photobucket.com/user/jimguitars/media/2002%20Explorer/IMG_1268_zpsgy9s4hye.mp4.html

Jim2
01-26-2015, 12:00 AM
here's the fuel pump tester.. maybe we should've run it longer..

http://vid58.photobucket.com/albums/g267/jimguitars/2002%20Explorer/IMG_1257_zpsgso3jrwx.mp4

Bob K
01-26-2015, 01:37 AM
Is there any place you can pinch off the fuel return line. It would be interesting to see if while running and the return line were pinched the fuel pressure should go up to above operating pressure. The other thing to try is remove the fuel injectors and watch them operate. Be careful as the mist they put out is very flammable. If the injectors are damaged and the end broken off one then to much fuel would pass through it and not let pressure build. At that point it would put out a stream of fuel and not a mist cloud. Either way a big fire hazard.

I find it hard to believe there is no pressure regulator in the fuel system but like I said I never work on Fords. Does the engine have a fuel rail running the length of each head with an injector for each cylinder or is there just two injectors putting fuel into the throttle body looking like a slimmed down carburetor?

Bob K

Jim2
01-26-2015, 03:59 PM
Is there any place you can pinch off the fuel return line. It would be interesting to see if while running and the return line were pinched the fuel pressure should go up to above operating pressure. The other thing to try is remove the fuel injectors and watch them operate. Be careful as the mist they put out is very flammable. If the injectors are damaged and the end broken off one then to much fuel would pass through it and not let pressure build. At that point it would put out a stream of fuel and not a mist cloud. Either way a big fire hazard.

I find it hard to believe there is no pressure regulator in the fuel system but like I said I never work on Fords. Does the engine have a fuel rail running the length of each head with an injector for each cylinder or is there just two injectors putting fuel into the throttle body looking like a slimmed down carburetor?

Bob K

I was thinking the same thing Bob. I searched all around the fuel rail and couldn't find anything. Even googling it comes up empty. When we asked at the parts store, they said "no such part"..

The intake has six individual injectors, it's not the kind that looks like a carb.

It must be controlled by this thing on return side of the pump assembly.
http://autobodystore.com/forum/attachment.php?attachmentid=15256&stc=1

Bob K
01-26-2015, 08:21 PM
You're right. that sure looks like a regulator. What is the vehicle you're working on? I've looked at Rangers but that doesn't sound right from your first post.

Jim2
01-26-2015, 10:52 PM
You're right. that sure looks like a regulator. What is the vehicle you're working on? I've looked at Rangers but that doesn't sound right from your first post.

It's a 2002 Exploder "Sport Trac"... V-6, 4.0 SOHC engine..

I was just over there, and Frank had already gone ahead and changed the entire fuel pump assembly. $270 later, she runs fine!

I'm pretty sure it was just that little piece... I have the old pump here, so I might mess with it when I get a chance.. I gotta find out how to test that that little piece...

But I know the pump motor works good!

Bob K
01-27-2015, 02:07 AM
There is something to be said for putting a complete unit in. Now the fuel gauge should work too and that is worth part of the repair cost. The new pump should last as long as the rest of the truck so even if you repaired the regulator the pump may very well have needed attention in the near future. Glad to hear it's running.

Bob K

Jim2
01-27-2015, 03:37 AM
Fuel pressure regulator could be stuck open and letting the pressure fall. That should be a cheap fix. Hook up the gauge and cranking the engine. If the fuel pressure drops then pinch the return hose with a pliers to keep the fuel pressure up to see if that keeps it running. That should tell you if the regulator is bad.

Bob K

Thanks again Bob!

Now that I look back over this whole thread, and I understand what's going on now, I can see how pinching that line would've told me everything I need to know.

When you first posted this, I was still tying to find the dang "pressure regulator".. we didn't pull the fuel pump yet at that point.

But, now that I understand it all, it would've been easy to pinch the "third line" that comes off the back of the fuel filter, and I would bet 10 to 1 that that would've raised the pressure at the rail.

The bottom line, behind the filter, is the return on this one

http://i58.photobucket.com/albums/g267/jimguitars/2002%20Explorer/IMG_1159_zpsji3uhenr.jpg

I'm definitely gonna remember that one...